Hours after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, insurance companies, realizing their enormous exposure to loss from the disaster (ultimately, close to $40 billion), filed for terrorism risk exclusions in property insurance policies. Within weeks, more than 40 state insurance departments had agreed.

Suddenly, companies across the U.S., from high-profile targets in New York to midsize lumberyards in Indiana, either could not obtain terrorism insurance or could not afford the new stand-alone policies that quickly materialized in the wake of the attack. More than a year later, the federal government finally came to the rescue with the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) as a “temporary Federal program that provides for a transparent system of shared public and private compensation for insured losses resulting from acts of terrorism.”

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